I'm going to keep this pretty short because I'm tired and don't want to agonize about my post, but I do want to submit a pasta dish to Ruth for Presto Pasta Night.
I came across this recipe for broccoli pine nut pasta salad in Moosewood Restaurant Daily Special. The combination of broccoli and pine nuts appealed to me, plus I'm always enticed by pasta salads. I love broccoli, including the stems. Why do so many people just throw them away after cutting off the florets? Poor broccoli stems. I'd make this recipe again, but it needs a bit of tweaking for more flavour. I would add more herbs (maybe instead of just parsley, add a few different kinds), more lemon zest, and more garlic. I really liked how this recipe heats up the olive oil with the garlic before adding it to the pasta. If you're looking for a simple pasta salad, this would be perfect.
Broccoli Pine Nut Pasta Salad
(adapted from Moosewood Restaurant Daily Special)
1/2 lb wholewheat bowtie pasta (about 3 cups)
5 cups broccoli florets and peeled chopped stems (1 large head)
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed (about 1 tablespoon)
1 1/2 cups chopped red peppers
1 1/2 cups chopped grape tomatoes
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
salt & pepper to taste
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
chopped fresh parsley (and/or whatever other herbs you want)
1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cover and cook the pasta until al dente.
2. Meanwhile, steam the broccoli for 5 to 7 minutes, until crisp but still tender and bright green. While the broccoli steams, warm the oil in a saucepan, gently heat the garlic in the oil for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, and remove from the heat. Drain the broccoli and set aside.
3. When the pasta is ready, drain it and transfer to a serving bowl. Toss lightly with the garlic and oil. Add the broccoli, bell peppers, and tomatoes to the pasta and toss well. Just before serving, stir in the lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Top with the pine nuts and parsley and serve immediately.